Y Bala  Merionethshire


In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Y Bala like this:

BALA, a small town, a subdistrict, and a district, in Merioneth. The town is in Llanycil parish; stands at the foot of Bala lake, and on the Ruabon and Dolgelly railway, 14 miles SW by W of Corwen; and has a rail way station with telegraph. An artificial mount called Tomen-y-Bala, probably of Roman origin, adjoins it; and two anciently fortified hills, called Caer-Gai and Castell-Corndochan, the former believed to have been occupied by the Romans, are in the neighbourhood. ...

The town consists chiefly of one wide street, with a few handsome houses. It has a post office‡ under Corwen, a church of 1867, two dissenting chapels, a free grammar school, a fine Calvinistic Methodist college of 1866, an Independent college, a townhall, a market house, a banking office, and two good inns. A manufacture of woollen hose and gloves was at one time flourishing, but has very greatly declined. A weekly market is held on Saturday; and fairs, on 14 May, 10 July, 27 Sept., 24 Oct., and 8 Nov. Bills were introduced in 1861 for rail ways to Corwen and Dolgelly. The town is a borough by prescription, governed by two bailiffs and a common council; and is a polling-place for the county, a seat of petty sessions, the seat of quarter sessions in January and July, and the seat of the Lent assizes. Real property, £3,821. Pop. in 1851, 1,341. The Rev. Thomas Charles, one of the founders of the British and Foreign Bible Society, lived here till his death in 1813.

The subdistrict and the district are identical with each other, and contain only the parishes of Llanycil, Llanuwchyllyn, Llangower, Llandderfel, and Llanfawr or Llanfor. Acres, 58,292. Poor. rates in 1866, £3,565. Pop. in 1861, 6,352. Houses, 1,373. Marriages in 1866, 50; births, 188,-of which 26 were illegitimate; deaths, 121,-of which 24 were at ages under 5 years, and 11 at ages above 85 years. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60,447; births, 1,704; deaths, 1,178. The places of worship in 1851 were 7 of the Church of Eng. land, with 1,686 sittings; 10 of Independents, with 1,354 s.; 1 of Baptists, with 132 s.; 18 of Calvinistic Methodists, with 2,647 s.; and 1 of Wesleyan Methodists, with 178 s. The schools were 10 public day schools, with 433 scholars; 1 private day school, with 25 s.; 39 Sunday schools, with 3,079 s.; and 1 evening school for adults, with 20 s.

Y Bala through time

Y Bala is now part of Gwynedd district. Click here for graphs and data of how Gwynedd has changed over two centuries. For statistics about Y Bala itself, go to Units and Statistics.

How to reference this page:

GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Y Bala, in Gwynedd and Merionethshire | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.


Date accessed: 22nd July 2024

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